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CALAIS RIOTS: Violence is 'unbearable' as five migrants shot in huge brawl

CALAIS RIOTS: Violence is 'unbearable' as five migrants shot in huge brawl

CALAIS RIOTS: Violence is 'unbearable' as five migrants shot in huge brawl

The violence left four Eritreans in critical condition in intensive care, with injuries including gunshot wounds in the neck, chest, abdomen and spine. Police are searching for a 37-year-old Afghan man suspected to have taken part in the shooting, according to the France 24 website.

French Interior Minister Gerard Collomb urgently flew to Calais to voice his support for the police and discuss the situation with the local authorities. He warned that there was likely to be further bloodshed.

Human rights workers said that tensions have increased as migrants have seen their chances of reaching Britain from Calais whittled by a tougher stance by the French and British governments.

French President Emmanuel Macron has vowed not to tolerate another Jungle camp being built in Calais, insisting the port town will not be used as a "side door" for migrants to gain access to the UK.

Police intervened to protect the Afghans, the authorities said.

France and Britain signed a new treaty last month aimed at speeding up asylum applications for migrants entitled to claim refuge in the UK.

"We received calls from young people who didn't know where to go, because the place they used to sleep was no longer accessible and were very unsafe", she said.

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"We stopped everything, the police came quickly, and everyone got scattered amid tear gas", said François Guennoc of the Migrants' Hostel charity, describing how more than 100 migrants from Africa, armed with iron rods and sticks, had tried to beat a group of 20 Afghans during a food distribution.

Aid organizations in Calais said that violent outbreaks would recur if the French government did not improve conditions for migrants stuck in legal limbo.

The notorious Calais "Jungle", once home to about 10,000 people, was demolished in 2016, but hundreds more migrants have since descended on the city.

Calais remains a magnet for hundreds of young people determined to reach the UK.

Mr Collomb urged migrants not to head to Calais if they wanted to try to get to the United Kingdom, saying their attempts from there - often trying to hide themselves in lorries - would be unsuccessful.

Police tackling the riots using batons and teargas as they worked to restore order in Calais.

These numbers make the fights the most serious - in terms of casualties - since the incidents of June 2016, which injured 40 people; and of July 2017, which injured 16, of which one seriously.

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